You ever look at a couple and think “Wow I wonder who else can tell she’s dating him to soothe her unresolved daddy issues.” But then you take a closer look at them and think “Or maybe he’s dating her for her tight, fit frame and carefree attitude. Poor guy’s really not dealing with his middle-age crisis well”.
At this point, you’ve stared at the couple long enough and suddenly, you’ve fallen into a trance that has you immediately snap out of your daydream and awaken to a stark reality; the couple you’ve been staring at this whole time aren’t two strangers. Instead, it’s the reflection of you and your boyfriend grooming yourselves in front of the bathroom mirror… Yikes.
In the early stages of dating, because both parties are still getting to know one another and their intentions, perception becomes very important. Whether it’s considering how you perceive one another or how others perceive you together, you can’t help but take all opinions into account. Without a doubt, the first opinions that come to mind are those that are preconceived or surface level. In this case specifically, your surface just happens to embody one of a young 20 something, while his reflects one that’s in it’s 40s.
For some, the idea of dating someone significantly older or younger encourages certain feelings of discomfort or unsettlement; let’s dive into why. Throughout the years we’ve socially constructed age limits in which we found appropriately suited romantic relationships. Historically, in ancient and medieval societies, child marriages were accepted for health, economic, and security purposes. Most people didn’t live past the age of 50 and so getting married young was a way to ensure the population would continue to grow. Infamously, young women, or shall I say young girls became high prospects for betrothal at the time. In exchange for being granted the consent to wed a young woman, the groom would pay a bride price- a price that could wage from being affordable to costly based on the bride’s “worth”. This monetary exchange would happen between the potential groom and the bride’s father; this traditional way of marriage was used as a means not only to give economic opportunities to low-income families but undermine the value of women within a social framework.
With this in retrospect, when many of us think of relationships with a large age gap, our minds date back to a time where the power dynamic between partners where extremely prevalent and masked around issues of jealousy, manipulation, and ownership. But in all actuality, any genuine relationship should be premised on love, trust, and respect.
Ageism is just as real and valid as any other type of prejudice and it’s important that you don’t allow the stereotypes surrounding ageism to stand at the forefront of how you treat your partner. Both older and younger halves of a couple have a completely different way in which they view the world, however, one perception does not reign as more valuable than the other. There are always things you can learn from your partner, no matter how old they are or how much or little they’ve experienced. Take the opportunity to always learn and grow from the relationships you enter.
Life’s too short to limit yourself to only leaving your heart open to a specific age group; meeting people whose company you thoroughly enjoy is already hard enough to come by.
P.S. If you were thinking of using this blog post to further justify your court case of being sexually involved with a minor, then think again. Here at Fully Exposed we aim to create a safe space where our readers can openly share ideas without fear of judgement. Unfortunately for all you scums out there, this safe space does not welcome pedophiles or child molesters. Thank you.
Hey, if you liked this blog, you should check out the even more interesting discussion we got into on capitalism and nudity on our Fully Exposed podcast! Happy Hump Day everyone!